Title{SSUSI: A Newly Available Resource for the Upper Atmosphere Community to Study the Global Response of the Coupled Ionosphere Thermosphere System}
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsPaxton, L, Schaefer, RK, Weiss, M, Wolven, BC, Zhang, Y, Miller, E, Bust, GS, Romeo, G
JournalAGU Fall Meeting Abstracts
Keywords0355 ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION AND STRUCTURE Thermosphere: composition and chemistry, 2407 IONOSPHERE Auroral ionosphere, 2415 IONOSPHERE Equatorial ionosphere, 7954 SPACE WEATHER Magnetic storms

The Global Ultraviolet Imager (GUVI) on TIMED was actually the 7th wide field of regard instrument built by APL. Five SSUSI instruments were built by APL and delivered, calibrated and ready for flight between 1994 and 1996. Another instrument, the Near Infrared Spectrograph was flown on the NASA NEAR mission using the SSUSI optical design. The first SSUSI flight was in 2003 on the DMSP F16 spacecraft. Two others have flown since then on DMSP F17 and F18. Two more await flight with the next slated for a Spring 2014 launch on DMSP F19. Recently, the SSUSI data have been made publicly releasable so they are, in principle, available to the research community. However, there are no funds to actually provide access to these products. We are working with various partners to provide a venue to access to the many products we routinely produce. SSUSI provides data products that both monitor the state of the auroral regions and yields a detailed picture of the ionosphere. SSUSI gives us the ability to observe the dynamics of these systems during storm and quiet periods throughout an entire solar cycle. The near polar orbit of the DMSP satellite provided excellent coverage of the auroral oval during solar minimum. During storm times, the high inclination orbit allows us to track the progress of the storm with 30 minute revisit time. In this presentation, we will also discuss the ability of SSUSI to image ionospheric dynamics and provide 3D images of the ionosphere. These data, when combined with assimilative data techniques provides a powerful new capability for examining the small and large scale structure of the ionosphere in a way that is not accessible to either GOLD or ICON.

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